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18 September 2009 @ 07:56 pm
The Future of Darklinks.com - Input needed  

Would you enjoy Dark Side of the Net as much, or more, or less if it was a blog (rather than a database with some rather dead links but also thousands of working ones, the way it currently is?)

I'm depressed today after finding out how much money it will take to file a lawsuit against someone who has copied over 95% of Dark Side of the Net's links, pretending they did all the work, and selling advertisements along next to them.

I have a compilation copyright, but it's expensive to pursue when some lazy loser purloins your 15 years of work choosing, selecting, annotating, editing and maintaining links. That's money I'd rather spend on my kids or on a much needed new patio, new car or vet bills for my asthmatic kitty Jack.

It occurs to me that a blog, by virtue of including more writing and less databasey link troves, is an easier and less expensive copyright to defend. A plagiarist would probably not copy over entire chunks of blog posts - and they'd be easier to find and litigate against if they did, than someone scraping my links database and pretending they'd magically found all those links themselves.

I'm crying, frustrated and I feel like shutting Dark Side of the Net down completely tonight. It's been fifteen years of various assholes copying my hard work, stripping my copyright notice and my name and linkbacks from my work, and pretending it's their own. Running ads on it and profiting from it. Ugh. I don't know if I have the energy for this much longer.

I'm sitting on around 5,000 sorted, carefully chosen, annotated Halloween links that haven't been added to Darklinks yet, fearful after all that work to just add them to the website where anyone can come copy them and make money off my content. I can just see someone copying over everything exactly, then proudly proclaiming on their website "The largest directory of Halloween links!" You can't really claim that when all you did was copy the *actual* largest directory..

I wonder if you guys would find a blog useful, or if you'd miss the database of backlinks that I would be removing and keeping only for my personal reference use as I looked for new links to add or old links to revisit and talk about. Is it a blog you'd check a few times a day? (Updates would still be mentioned on Twitter and Facebook, etc).

If Darklinks was a blog:

- The domain name wouldn't change, and we'd finally get rid of my outdated 1998 text only ugly red and black template.

- More visual, with graphics of some of the websites I was reviewing.

- I'd tend to update it the way I update Facebook. I'd disappear for a couple days, then have a huge flurry of activity with 7 or 8 posts that day. Each post would probably have four or five links, or maybe more if I was covering a whole subject such as worthwhile steampunk resources, etc. If you didn't happen to be interested in steampunk, you'd have to skip over that post and wait for me to post something else you might be more interested in.

- You'd no longer be able to access my music links to see all the worthwhile Siouxsie or The Cure links I know about. Instead, you'd have to search the blog to see if I'd mentioned any new Siouxsie sites or written a blog post recently about some goth music sites and happened to mention a few of hers.

- There'd be no more link list of hundreds of links to Halloween recipes. Instead, I'd throw out a few witch-hat cupcake recipe type links mixed in with a post about a haunted house in Georgia, mixed in with a couple other random Halloween links. You'd have to google Halloween Recipes for yourself.

- The vast numbers of hundreds of dead links on Dark Side of the Net would disappear, so info would be fresh, up to date, with no dead links unless you crawled backwards into the archive. I'd likely delete archived posts eventually just to prevent scrapers from stealing all the old links.

- Those of you submitting your sites to be added, would likely have a much faster turnaround time, as I'd add them in a blog post faster than I would if I had to categorize them and fit them into my existing links.

Come see what a typical Dark Side of the Net blog post would look like:

http://darklinksblog.blogspot.com/

I'd love your thoughts.

I'm trying to decide if I should throw in the hat or move on in a different direction or find financial resources to sue or what.

-Carrie

 
 
 
Carrie Carolincarriec on September 19th, 2009 03:30 am (UTC)
Hrm, good point :(